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Mol Psychiatry. 2001 Nov;6(6):678-83.

Altered IMPA2 gene expression and calcium homeostasis in bipolar disorder.

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  • 1Section of Biochemical Psychiatry, University of Toronto, 250 College Street, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M5T 1R8.


Reduced inositol monophosphatase (IMPase) activity and elevated basal intracellular calcium levels ([Ca(2+)](B)) have been reported in B lymphoblast cell lines (BLCLs) from bipolar I affective disorder (BD-I) patients, which may reflect cellular endophenotypes of this disorder. As the PI cycle couples to intracellular Ca(2+) mobilization, these two putative endophenotypes may be related. Using an RT-PCR assay, mRNA levels were estimated for IMPA1 and 2 genes encoding human IMPase 1 and 2, respectively, in BLCLs phenotyped on [Ca(2+)](B), from patients with a DSM-IV diagnosis of BD-I (n = 12 per phenotype) and from age- and sex-matched healthy subjects (n = 12). IMPA2 mRNA levels were significantly lower in BLCLs from male BD-I patients with high [Ca(2+)](B) (n = 6) compared with healthy male subjects (n = 5) (-52%, P = 0.013), male BD-I patients with normal BLCL [Ca(2+)](B) (n = 8) (-42%, P = 0.003) and female BD-I patients with high [Ca(2+)](B) (n = 6) (-59%, P = 0.0004). A significant negative correlation was observed between IMPA2 mRNA levels and [Ca(2+)](B) in BLCLs from male (P = 0.046), but not female BD-I patients. Sex-dependent differences were also evident in postmortem temporal cortex IMPA2 mRNA levels which, in contrast to BLCLs, were significantly higher in male BD-I subjects compared with male controls (P = 0.025, n = 4/group). Collectively, these observations suggest a potential sex-dependent link between abnormalities in IMPA2 expression and calcium homeostasis in the pathophysiology of BD.

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